MANILA, Philippines — For a number of NBA players, being traded to a new team does more harm than good to their careers -- especially when they spent a good chunk of their careers in a different team.
But Jordan Clarkson, who saw two team moves in a span of a year after transferring from the Los Angeles Lakers, the Cleveland Cavaliers and then to the Utah Jazz, took the opportunity in stride and has made the most out of it.
Now, flourishing as the Sixth Man of the Year with the league's best team, Clarkson has found his niche — all thanks to the new organization he now calls home.
Right after being presented with the award, Clarkson spoke about how being in Utah changed everything in his career for the better.
"For me, it was tough," said Clarkson about having to adjust in finding his role in a team.
"I started in LA during that time, but just coming into myself and trying to find the impact I can have in this game and what I can bring to it. You know, when I got that role I just kind of took it and worked at it," he added.
"This situation here, being traded to Utah from Cleveland, you know really enhanced everything just because everybody knows their role and knows what they're doing,"
The Filipino-American guard has seen the best play of his career with the Jazz, gaining his first NBA career accolade since being named NBA All-Rookie Team in 2015.
He flourished with the Jazz, who decided to give him a four-year extension after only playing a total of 42 games in the prior season.
It seems to have paid off for the Jazz and Clarkson himself, as the 28-year-old continuously impacts the game.
In the 2020-21 NBA regular season, Clarkson played 68 games for the Jazz and posted norms of 18.4 points off of the bench.
While it remains unclear just how far Clarkson and the Jazz can go this season, it seems like this partnership between the two is a match made in heaven.